Monday, February 20, 2006

Playing Mom

On Friday, as I anxiously awaited the end of the day when M and I would go to his parents' house to have his 5 year old daughter V for the weekend, something someone said struck me. That day, a conservative talk show host referred to Hillary Clinton's infamous "I could have stayed home and baked cookies" speech and explained that raising kids was much harder than working 9 to 5. Being that I have no children of my own, I doubted the validity of that statement. Little did I know the coming weekend would make me rethink that rush to judgement.

Though I'd spent a number of Saturday afternoons with M's daughter, I was still nervous as to how the weekend would go. I never could have anticipated that I would spend 2 days and 2 nights with a 5 year old on my lap, glued to my hip, and in my arms.

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Nor could I have anticipated that V and her dad would be playing tug of war with me the whole weekend. Arguing over what percent each got of me while we watched TV together, over who got to sit in the middle and over who I belonged to. (I never felt so loved.) Every night, we stayed up much later than V's bedtime playing games, watching movies, having tickle fights and jumping on the bed -- so late it made me wonder which of the three of us was the 5 year old.

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Each night, V cuddled up in bed with me until she got tired enough for M to put her in her own bed, and each morning at approximately 7AM (!!!), V came and crawled right back into my bed ready to wake me up. She and M had a good time playing with my camera phone before she did so, however.

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We went on the Metro, to the mall and to the toy store, spent time at an arcade, painted pictures, danced around the house and did each other's make up. I got so used to being with her that it almost didn't phase me when someone said to us at the mall "Wow, she's almost as tall as her mom." (Almost!)

The weekend was more than I ever could have hoped for. On so many levels and in so many ways, it really felt like the three of us were a family. When V announced that she loved me (which she said on a number of occasions and to various family members) as she snuggled up next to me on our last day together, I just felt so content and I knew that this time it would be much harder for us to say goodbye. (In fact, V was positive that she was taking me home with her -- something I'm sure her mother would have loved!)

Needless to say that Sunday night, I slept like a baby - though even in my dreams, I was sad that V wasn't with us. I don't think I was ever so exhausted or so grateful (in my whole life) to have a Monday off of work than I was today. When M called this morning, after I woke up after 10AM (drained beyond belief), he said, "So, do you still want to have children?" I said, "Yes, I'll just sleep all day while they are at school." "What will you do for the first 5 years?" he asked.

My reply?

"Cry."

21 comments:

Anika said...

Nan! You are so beautiful in those pictures... and I can just see you as this full, gorgeous, gracious mother overflowing with an abundance of love and responsibility (which are often linked together)... absolutely wonderful. :-) I've been thinking about you a lot lately, and I hope you're doing well.

clew said...

How wonderful that the love of your life's little one and you are also so in love. You are truly where you belong, friend.

A wonderful post. I'm just so happy for you!

Christine said...

that is the cutest thing ever!!!

Hamel said...

As a father of three boys, I'm amazed at how tired I am. Wonderful post, by the way.

green said...

In that last picture, nunzia, you look like an angel. M's daughter is adorable.

How true it is that people without kids have no clue how much work kids are when you do have them. But it is worthwhile work, seeing young people grow.

You think it was hard letting M's daughter go back to her mom? Just you wait until you have your own little ones and have to spend time away from them. It is one of the hardest things to do. Ever.

I'm glad you had such a rewarding weekend.

Damian said...

Kids can be a handful, i don't have anything of my own, but I use to have my kid cousin around and she was alot to handle. She seem to be taken by you. Take care - God bless.

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crossblade said...

sweet post!!!!
I just love my mom after this!!! more and more...
thanks Nunzia

martie said...

Nan, how wonderful that V and you hit it off so well. Being a "mom" can be a lot of work but the joy is well worth it! You look so happy in the pics with V that motherhood must come natural to you!

(BTW, thanks for stopping by my blog, and I am fine! Thanks for asking.)

~Deb said...

First of all, I'm loving those pictures. So candid looking.

Anyway, kids are quite the handful. I have a couple of neices and one nephew. It's nice to visit---but it's even better going back home sometimes.

There is nothing like bonding with a child. Even more---a child telling you that they love you. Do you know how huge that is? You're very lucky!

I hope you enjoyed your weekend with them. They will always remember that weekend with you. Kids never forget.

Great post!

Kitty Cheng said...

Nan! You're so sweet and lovely. I can imagine you being a great mom.

Pia said...

i'm sure you're going to be a great mom. i'm happy for you that you get along well with M's daughter. =)

Matthew said...

I think it is ideal if one of the parents can stay at home with the children. I was fortunate enough to have one parent who did not work. I don't know how fortunate that one parent might have felt...

M said...

You are absolutely the sweetest woman that I could ever ask for and the most loving person that I could ever bring into my daughters life. I am so greatful for you. I love you so much. :) mmwwwaaaa!

m said...

Did I mention that you're beautiful!!!

Kristi said...

How sweet! I'm glad you two get along so well!

Karin said...

Sounds like you had a wonderful visit. It's so nice that you both get along so well :)

audrey` said...

V loves you very much.

You'll be a very loving mummy!

Nightcrawler said...

You know that old line about the hardest job you'll ever love? I think you just discovered it.

green said...

I think that the google search bar is too long andhas messed up your sidebar & pushed it to the end of the page.

Nunzia said...

hey thanks! i think i fixed it.

God bless and thank you all for your sweet comments and support.

Jujubie said...

Wow...lurve this entry...you are one lucky lady!